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Dimitry K., Esq.
Dimitry K., Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 41220
Experience:  Multiple jurisdictions, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation and administration.
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I have an espresso machine that needed repair of one of the

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I have an espresso machine that needed repair of one of the valves. This company come to my shop to fix the machine but could not. They took the machine back to their shop and attempted to make the repair. They also took it upon themselves to do mutiple repairs without my uthorization. Now I have a bill for $2,590.47. I originally purchased the machine new for $2,800. Even if they had told me the repair would cost anywhere near that amount I would NOT have authorized the repair. Am I obligated to pay for the repairs?
Thank you for your question. Please permit me to assist you with your concerns.

Exactly what did you authorize (or not authorize) them to do pertaining to repairs? Do you have any of that in writing?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

There is nothing in writing other than the invoice that they gave me. I authorized them to fix the valve that was not working as good as it should and to clean the machine. No estimate was given to me. I did not authorize ANY repair beyond that.

Thank you for your follow-up, Scott.

These repairs that they made, were they are relevant? It appears that they did not keep you in th loop pertaining to their services but continued making repairs. You never gave them a formal end-point either, correct? You did not tell them that if repairs went above a certain dollar amount that they are required to cease repairs. Correct?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

We never discussed money. They have been doing repairs on my equipment for several years. Their prices have been on the high side but I never questioned them because in the past they have done minor repairs and service with no charge.

Thank you for your follow-up, Scott.

In that situation I am afraid that I have unwelcome news for you. Since you never gave them a formal limitation on the type of work they could or could not do, and they did make repairs for you, they are entitled to be paid for their work. This is a situation where since they provided you with labor, specifically with repairs, they are entitled to be compensated since under common law they can claim that you were 'unjustly enriched' by their work and justifiably demand compensation. Giving them the item and telling them to 'repair' it is sufficient for them to claim that as they were not given a limit or a cut-off, they did not violate the terms of the agreement. As a consequence you would then be responsible.

I am sorry!

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

If I would have known that the repair would have cost that much I would have scrapped the 2 group machine in question and purchased a used single group machine enabling me to have more counter space. I don't understand how the law is on their side and as such I am being forced into something I never would have done. All during the repair which took around 10 days he never once told me about the cost. He only said, "We'll take care of you buddy." I guess he really did take care of me. Not good care but...


It does sound as if he took care of you indeed. But it ultimately comes down to service--if someone performs work on your behalf and there is no clear language, terms, or conditions pertaining to termination of that work and those services, then that person can demand that he be compensated for his work. And as the amount was never disclosed, it now permits the person to seek full costs (provided that he can prove and show that he actually did do the work on your behalf). An open-ended order of 'repairing' something exposes the person to whatever costs and expenses those repairs end up costing to the party who requested those repairs to take place.

Good luck.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks for your help. A red flag for me has always been if a sales person or vendor calls me his buddy or refers to me as a freind, I better watch out. I'll pay closer attention next time. Lesson well learned. Thank you!

You are most welcome, Scott.

And I do tend to agree pertaining to terminology. Whenever someone is unwilling to give you direct information or numbers when that is possible to obtain, please beware going forward. Good luck!

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